Neil Bonnet dashed through heavy traffic on the final lap and edged Benny Parsons by a car length to win the Firecracker 400 today.
Bonnett held off Darrel Waltrip through the last 100 miles, keeping Waltrip from regaining a lap he had lost by pitting on the green flag just before rookie brough out the yellow with a spectacular crash on the east 31-degree banking.
Not only did Bonnet have to hold off Parsons and Waltrip to keep his slender lead through the final 28 laps, he also had to worry about rookie Dale Earhardt, who was right behind Parsons at the finish.
It was Bonnet's first victory at Daytona International Speedway but the second Firecracker in a row for his Wod Brothers Mercury. David Pearson, who won last year, was replaced in the car by Bonnett last April. He promptly won the Mason-dixon 500.
Bonnett set a record speed of 172,890 miles per hour in a race slowed by only two caution flags for a total of nine of the 160 laps.
Neither Allison nor Labonte was injured in their crash, which came just after the halfway point as Allison surrendered the lead with a pit stop and was running fast to catch up. In an earlier wreck, Sandy Satullo and Jimmy Finger tangled on the backstretch. Finger was taken to a hospital for a foot x-ray. Satullo was unhurt.